Speedy Tuesday – Fingers-on with the brand new Forstner “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet A contemporary various to these costly JB eBay purchases by Robert-Jan BroerDecember 10, 2019 MIN READSpeedy Tuesday – Fingers-on with the brand new Forstner “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet
A couple of months in the past, I pre-ordered a Forstner “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet. The Forstner model was resurrected and began to provide these weird-looking mesh bracelets once more that could possibly be seen on the wrists of NASA’s astronauts.
These bracelets are sometimes higher generally known as JB Champion bracelets. JB stands for Jacoby Bender, they usually acquired the Forstner model (in 1963) earlier than astronauts began to make use of their “Komfit” bracelets. Each firms had been lengthy gone already, however Forstner has just lately been introduced again to life once more. Speedmaster lovers have been responding very positively to the brand new Forstner firm, and I’ve to say that I shared that pleasure as nicely. Someplace in October, I made a decision to utilize their pre-order of $100 (after this pre-order interval, the bracelets retail for $125) for this “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet. The identical sort of bracelet that Neil Armstrong had on his Speedmaster, for instance, see beneath.
Forstner “Komfit” JB Mesh Bracelet
Neil Armstrong analyzing a rock pattern, carrying his Speedmaster on a JB Champion bracelet.
Only a week in the past, I obtained my Forstner “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet, and I believed it might be good to present it some protection right here for this Speedy Tuesday. Funnily sufficient, I purchased a real JB bracelet a couple of months in the past as nicely, but it surely wasn’t the identical fashion as this “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet. I at all times had difficulties spending a lot cash on a JB Champion Komfit bracelet as a result of, in reality, these aren’t essentially the most stable constructed bracelets on the market. NASA astronauts had their Speedmasters on these bracelets as a result of they’d be simpler to interrupt than the unique Omega bracelets. If one thing would get caught between the bracelet and the astronaut’s wrist, NASA quite had the watch misplaced (or broken) than the wearer having to lose his hand. So as a substitute of going for the unique Omega bracelets, these Speedmasters had been placed on the JB Champion mesh bracelet. That is the knowledge that Petros Protopapas (Head of Model Heritage) shared with us greater than as soon as about these mesh bracelets. Anyhow, with the excessive market costs of those authentic JB Champion bracelets, I by no means might get myself to buy the “Komfit” mesh mannequin. So the current re-introduction of Forstner is a really welcome one, as they’ll supply the “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet for $125 USD.
One other good level is that the unique JB Champion mesh bracelet was in 19mm (and the unique Forstner Komfit in 18mm), which wouldn’t accurately match at this time’s 20mm Speedmaster Skilled Moonwatch. For this text, although, I made a decision to place the brand new Forstner “Komfit” JB Champion bracelet on my Speedmaster’57 60th anniversary watch, which has 19mm lugs anyway. NASA by no means used the CK2915, however began with the CK2998 (privately purchased by Schirra and Cooper). The NASA astronauts used the 105.003, 105.012 and 145.012 through the Apollo program, Armstrong carrying the 105.012 throughout Apollo 11 (and within the image above).
Becoming the bracelet
The Forstner “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet is available in a protracted rectangular white field, with a velvet pillow and two elastic bands that stored the bracelet in place through the transport. Additionally inside, you will see a little bit foil with eight small spherical protecting stickers on it. I missed it at first, however my colleague Daniel (who additionally ordered a bracelet) pointed them out to me and requested me if I used to be going to make use of them to guard the within of the lugs for the tip items of the bracelet. I informed him most likely not, however when becoming the bracelet, I made a decision to make use of them anyway.
The tip items of the Forstner “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet are versatile, which implies they can be utilized for various lug widths (between 16mm and 20mm). You’ll be able to match them between the lugs with out utilizing a software, however since they’re versatile, I made a decision to make use of the lug protector stickers as the tip items may transfer a bit and trigger pointless scratches on the within of the lugs. It’s a simple job to get the bracelet fitted, but it surely nonetheless doesn’t damage to look at the video that Forstner put on-line with some simple and quick directions.
Sizing the bracelet
As soon as you set the bracelet on the watch, you might want to dimension it to your wrist. In case you are not conversant in the unique JB Champion mesh bracelets, you’ll most likely must fiddle round a bit or watch the sizing video on Forstner’s web site. It’s fairly simple truly, simply launch the bracelet first, by sliding the small ‘button’ backward. The clasp ‘opens’, and you’ll have one free finish and may transfer the bracelet via the primary keeper. Just under the lugs, there’s additionally one fastened half (stamped ‘JB’ on the perimeters), from which you launched the clasp. You can find a small ‘flip lock’ you can launch along with your fingernails. Now, you possibly can transfer that half up and down the bracelet as nicely. By pushing the flip lock in direction of the bracelet once more, you’ll have it fastened once more. This fashion, you possibly can dimension your bracelet rapidly with out having to make use of particular instruments.
Maybe additionally noteworthy is that the Forstner Komfit bracelet is a mm wider than the unique JB Champion bracelet (16mm as a substitute of 15mm). Forstner did this to make it a greater match for at this time’s Speedmaster (Skilled) watches (with a lug-width of 20mm).
The Forstner “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet is fairly lightweight and wears very snug on the wrist, principally as most mesh bracelets do. The standard of the bracelet is significantly better than I anticipated it to be (given the value of $125USD in comparison with the value of the unique Omega bracelets). It’s undoubtedly not the identical high quality as authentic Omega bracelets, however neither had been the unique JB Champion bracelets, so in that regard, it’s all high quality. However I used to be fortunately stunned to see that the bracelet is definitely so well-designed and thought-through. Though the bracelet can slide from left to proper on the tip items, it is not going to ‘hit’ the lugs, so no danger of harm there. The bracelet nowhere feels sharp or disagreeable and feels fairly stable regardless of the lightweight. Releasing the clasp may want some apply, but in addition right here, you received’t discover any sharp elements that may damage your fingers. The clasp and its mechanism is nicely designed and feels sturdy. In brief: the bracelet is nicer and ‘extra’ than I anticipated it to be. It’s a very cool various to the unique Omega bracelets, particularly in case you are within the NASA history mixed with the Speedmaster watches the astronauts wore. It’s a pity I don’t have my caliber 321 pre-Moon Speedmaster at house, in any other case, I’d have fitted it to that watch, because it makes a traditionally ‘higher’ match than this Speedmaster’57 60th anniversary.
Value and Availability
I feel the brand new Forstner did a superb job with the “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet. They ship a greater product than I anticipated for the $125 USD value, and the value could be very justified, for my part. I additionally assume this value level could be very sensible, as it’s one thing ‘enjoyable’ you possibly can add to your Speedmaster. It’s one thing totally different than including the XXth leather-based strap or NATO strap to your Speedy. After all, you can too match this “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet to one in all your different watches, as a few of the astronauts did as nicely. You will discover some useful OmegaForum threads on the unique mesh bracelets here and here.
I feel this Forstner “Komfit” JB mesh bracelet is a no brainer for any Speedmaster fan on the market, particularly in case you are – like me – not ready to place down a couple of hundred on the unique JB Champion mesh bracelet. There are two variations of the bracelet, a brief one and the unique one. The quick one will be sized between 11cm and 20cm and the unique one between 14cm and 23cm.
You’ll be able to order yours by way of the official Forstner website.
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Concerning the writer
Ever since he was a younger little one, Robert-Jan was drawn to watches, though it had been digital Casio and quartz Swatch fashions on the time. Within the mid-1990s, his curiosity elevated when he began to examine mechanical watches in… read more
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